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Brown settles for point on Ebbsfleet managerial debut
EBBSFLEET United manager Steve Brown revealed he was satisfied with an opening day point after a scoreless draw at home to Havant & Waterlooville.
In an uneventful game, both sides struggled to keep possession and neither were able to create too many chances, with the two defences on top thanks to some committed challenges.
Brown admitted there was a lack of quality in the final third, yet refused to blame this on the absence of first choice strikers Ben May and Billy Bricknell, both of whom were ruled out with back injuries.
“It was a tight game,” the Stonebridge Road chief said.
“We knew it was going to be difficult because for me Havant are the dark horses of this league.
“Lee Bradbury’s done ever so well with the team he’s assembled and he’s done well in the media to slide under the radar, because I think they’ll be there or thereabouts.
“There was some good football played at times and some honest endeavour but I think in there was a lack of quality product in both final thirds, whether it be a cross, header or shot at goal.
“A couple of opportunities fell to Stacy Long and I was just begging for him to take a pot shot, but he didn’t.”
Brown added: “If I have a striker out, I feel I’ve got enough quality in the squad to replace him.
“It does affect us, though.
“Billy walking in on Thursday after 15 minutes of training is not ideal.
“I’ve got a squad I’m happy with and Billy shouldn’t be out for too much longer, while Ben is showing great signs of improvement.
“I wouldn’t focus too much on the fact I’m missing a couple of strikers, as whatever 11 I put out will create opportunities.”
The match was Brown’s first ever competitive match as manager, having replaced long-serving Liam Daish, who agreed an exit with the club’s new owners in the summer.
And the former Charlton defender revealed it was a proud moment for him.
Brown said: “It’s been a long time coming for me, 10 years in the making.
“I was excited today and I’ll take the draw, although I’d have preferred the three points, naturally.
“We’ve avoided a loss, but whether you’re a manager with no experience, or with a wealth of experience, you can’t wait to get that opening three points of a season on the board.
“I have to say, the support here from day one has been very, very good.
“If we could have delivered a goal and three points today then the crowd might have risen for Maidenhead on Bank Holiday Monday.
“The fans have always been encouraging so far and I’m hoping there will be better results along the way.
“I’m not unhappy with the performance today, but I’m sure performances will get better.”
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